The fitness world tell you that if you’re not progressing its because you aren’t training hard enough! You will hear things like “no pain, no gain” or “train to absolute failure” or my favourite one “no days off”. There’s a difference between training and exhausting yourself. As a coach I have leant that anyone can design a workout to fatigue even an professional athlete, just make them do a million exercises with very little rest.
The Front LeverThe definition of training ”the action of teaching a person or yourself a particular skill or type of behaviour”. This is what matters! I have been training calisthenics for 3 years and I have acquired many different skills. You will never see me training harder (whatever that means), I train smart so I can achieve my goal. One thing that has allowed me to continue to progress in calisthenics is improving my recovery between training session. Instead of training harder, I started implementing techniques to “recover faster”. I have created a list of the things I do to help with my recovery and a short description.
#1 High Protein: This affects me the most, If my daily protein intake is low I notice it. I make sure to have about 2x bodyweight of protein everyday. I weight 75kg so everyday I have around 150g of protein. I was a vegetarian for 1 year straight and didn’t lose any muscle, so no excuses if your vegetarian or vegan.
#2 Device Curfew: We all know how important sleep is but yet we neglect trying to improve it. It has taken me years to really value my sleep but now I can see the big effect it has on my life, not just training but my mood, motivation, eating habits and productivity. I have applied many different techniques to improve it, the biggest one is no devices (phone, Netflix, laptop) 1 hour minimum before bed. When I fail to do this my sleep is always bad.
#3 Kick Start Your Blood Circulation: Improving your blood circulation helps to recover the cells and tissues damaged during training. I improve my blood circulation but taking hot & cold showers throughout the day. The ratio of hot & cold is random, it’s depends on how I’m feeling on the day. Also I do breathing exercises (1–3 minutes) and walk throughout the day.
#4 Hockey Ball Obsession: Professional athletes get sports massages pretty much on a daily basis but I cannot afford that. Instead I have a hockey ball that use throughout the day to pinpoint any tight areas.
There’s many other techniques you can do to help your recovery, I’ve shared what’s worked for me. The key thing is to take your recovery into your own hands. As you progress, get stronger and start doing more difficult exercises you can no longer just expect your body to recover without putting some work in.